Spotlight on… Emma Rigby
Emma’s role sits within Evelina London Children’s Hospital’s kidney services, which specialises in areas such as chronic kidney disease management, home-based and hospital-based dialysis, kidney transplantation and serious bladder disorders. One condition the service deals with often is nephrotic syndrome, which is when the kidneys don't work properly, causing large amounts of protein to leak into the urine.
A well-known face around the hospital, Emma has seen many children and their families pass through Evelina London. We find out what it is about her job that’s made her stay there for over 20 years.
What is the name of your role?
Paediatric Renal Nurse Specialist
Which part of Evelina London Children’s Hospital do you work in?
The renal unit - mainly in outpatients but also on Beach Ward.
What does a typical day look like for you?
I start the day with checking my emails and listening to phone messages, checking results from the previous day and making phone calls. One day a week I am on Beach Ward doing GFR tests (glomerular filtration rate - a test used to check how well the kidneys are working) and on the other days I’m in clinics, either nurse-led or with consultants. One phone call can completely change a day though; there is never a dull moment.
What do you enjoy most about your job?
Lots of our children are long-term patients and I love building relationships with the families and children. I hope that this makes the many hospital experiences they have as pleasant as possible, as well as give the child and their family the confidence to care for their children and manage their complex conditions. It is a privilege to watch them grow and develop, although I do feel very old now when children I looked after as babies are passing their driving tests, towering over me and even bringing their own children back to meet us! I also work within a fantastic team. The paediatric renal unit is a great place to work.
Which part of your job is most challenging?
Trying to keep up-to-date with the 260 children with nephrotic syndrome that we look after. And keeping the paediatric renal consultants in line!
What is your favourite thing about Evelina London?
It’s great to work in a hospital that the children love. I was once asked by a sibling if she could have her birthday party here!
What’s your proudest achievement in your career to date?
That I’ve been working here for 20 years and am still loving my job.
What do you like to do outside of work in your free time?
I have three children so most of my time is taken up running around after them or running them around! Days out around London are always a favourite.
Name one thing that the patients might not know about you.
I cycle to and from work every day.
If you could only take one thing to a desert island, what would it be?
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